Gold thin-film on the F-16 cockpit glass hides radiation from radars

WARSAW, POLAND — Military expert Mr. Pavlo Narozhniy spoke to Kanal 24 TV about the F-16 and MiG-29. The reason is the previously announced delivery of Soviet MiG-29 missile launchers from Poland and Slovakia. “Ukraine needs the American F-16 fighter jets more than the Soviet MiG-29 if it wants to defeat Russia,” the expert said on television.

MiG-29 can't shoot anything down with its 40-year-old radar
Photo credit: Wikimedia

Mr. Narozhniy declared that the MiG-29 is a really good fighter. Ukrainian pilots are used to exploiting it, which is good for the Ukrainian Air Force at the moment. But the MiG-29 is a technically backward fighter, says the expert. According to him, the MiG-29 can perform a support role in the air, and even conduct air-to-air combat, but it cannot tip the scales in favor of the Ukrainian Air Force.

The MiG-29 is easy to shoot down

The military expert says that the MiG-29’s role is exactly that – air-to-air combat. But in recent years, this combat aircraft has had almost no technological development. At the same time, we are talking about a rather long period – from the beginning of the 80s. This puts the Ukrainian pilots in greater danger, who will operate with outdated avionics for their time. The radars also won’t be able to do as well as modern Russian fighters, or the American F-16.

“The MiG-29 is too noisy, it has two engines that emit a very large amount of smoke. This aircraft is too visible on enemy radars. This only tells us that the MiG-29 is too easy to shoot down,” said Mr. Narozhny.

The F-16 is a modification platform

Military expert believes that the F-16 is designed to perform different missions in the air. This aircraft, the expert says, can attack ground targets or sea targets using anti-ship missiles under its wings.

The F-16 is designed as a platform that allows for much easier modifications in the future. The MiG-29 does not have this capability and is therefore too slow and difficult to update. Even the modifications in the Soviet fighter are not always successful, according to the expert.

The F-16 is a multi-role platform that is designed to strike ground, air, and sea targets. The presence of the Harpoon cruise missile greatly changes the functionality of the fighter. Even if it is returning from a mission, or going on a mission and encounters an enemy MiG-29, the aircraft is designed to fight air combat. The chance of the F-16 winning the air battle with the MiG-29 is high, Mr. Narozhniy believes.

The secret of the F-16

Very few people know, but the F-16 has a stealth compartment. This is the cockpit. When the aircraft was designed, American engineers from Lockheed Martin decided to hide the avionics from enemy eyes. I.e. to hide the radiation from the instruments in the cockpit from the radars. Therefore, the inside of the cockpit glass is covered with a gold film.

“The F-16 is a very serious weapon that can match what the Russians have,” Narozhny said, referring to more modern Russian aircraft such as the Su-30, Su-35, and Su-57.

The US currently has no plans to send US F-16 multi-role aircraft to Ukraine. Washington’s position was not affected by Poland’s decision to transfer Soviet MiG-29 fighter jets to Ukraine.


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